A Puzzle by Metman
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The puzzle is available by clicking on the above grid.
Today we have the latest puzzle from Metman. As usual, the setter will be delighted to receive feedback from you, the solvers. I do ask that you remember that for most setters this is a new experience, so please only offer constructive criticism.
A review by Prolixic follows.
Welcome back to Metman. After a lot of improvement, there are quite a few more points to comment on in this crossword. Attention to detail is key in creating a smooth, well constructed crossword. In a number of clues, this was missing. However, there were some excellent clues as well I would particularly note 3d, 12d and 23a.
5 So the French men missing English become glum (6)
SOLEMN – The SO from the clue followed by the French masculine singular for “the” and the MEN from the clue after removing (missing) the abbreviation for English. A minor point, but the structure wordplay become definition should be wordplay becomes definition.
7 Final delivery could be outstandingly attractive (8)
KNOCKOUT – Double definition of the final delivery that floors an opponent when boxing and an informal word for describing an attractive person.
9 Shylock perhaps puts measure to the Queen to become a gemologist (8)
JEWELLER – The faith group of which Shylock was a representative example (perhaps) followed by an old measure of cloth and the abbreviation for the current queen.
10 Animal put MEP in turmoil (6)
MUPPET – An anagram (in turmoil) of PUT MEP. This should have had a definition by example indicator as “Animal” is an example of the definition.
11 Combine glitz with one old TV series (8,4)
TWILIGHT ZONE – An anagram (combine) of GLITZ WITH ONE. Perhaps recombine would be a better anagram indicator here.
13 Soldiers trade but it is not a pleasant experience (6)
ORDEAL – The abbreviation for Other Ranks (soldiers) and four letter word meaning to trade.
15 Iron turned to confront and obliterate (6)
EFFACE – Reverse (turned) the chemical symbol for Iron and follow this with a word meaning to confront.
18 Mutinous seal misbehaving but this may be coincidental (12)
SIMULTANEOUS – An anagram (misbehaving) of MUTINOUS SEAL.
21 Alphabetic range held by a fool may offer more (6)
GAZUMP – The first and last letters of the alphabet inside (held by) a dialect word for a fool. The structure wordplay may definition does not work. The “may” could have been omitted.
22 Material better for headgear (5,3)
CLOTH CAP – Another word for fabric or material followed by a word meaning better or out do.
23 SE Dubai along with the north became nonpartisan (8)
UNBIASED – An anagram (became) of SE DUBAI N (the North).
24 Pretty Spanish male fish (6)
BONITO – Double definition. The need to know the Spanish word for beautiful is a bit of a stretch.
1 What most servicemen are expected to get up to (8)
REVEILLE – Cryptic definition of the bugle call used to awaken servicemen.
2 United Nations to publicise disconnect (6)
UNPLUG – The abbreviation for United Nations followed by a four letter word meaning to advertise.
3 Space-time connection found in the garden (8)
WORMHOLE – Double definition of something postulated as a bridge between spatial manifolds and something left by burrowing creatures in the garden.
4 Silly Jack drops account with counterfeit peso for capital (6)
SKOPJE – An anagram (counterfeit) of JK (Jack with the AC (account) removed (drops)) PESO. The two anagram indicators (silly and counterfeit) is unnecessary and misleading as there is only the one anagram of all of the letters.
6 Pick up a book on filigree art (8)
OPENWORK – Split 4, 4 this might imply that you pick up and read a book.
7 Artist involved with Kate is carried out on a mat (6)
KARATE – An anagram (involved) of RA (Artist) KATE.
8 Ensure a good crop with fertiliser (4)
UREA -Remove (crop) the letters from ENSURE A GOOD. The good in the clue is padding and could be omitted although I suspect it was included so that the answer was hidden (crop)) in ensure a good. Perhaps the problem would have been overcome with “Ensure arable crop with fertiliser”.
12 A letter’s target (8)
OCCUPANT – Cryptic definition of who a landlord (letter) seeks.
14 Scamper to place of duty for illumination (8)
LAMPPOST – A Scottish word meaning to scamper or run followed by a word for a place where a sentry might be on duty. Perhaps the obscure Scottish word would have been more fairly clued as “Scots scamper…” and the definition might have been better a source of illumination.
16 Release worker using no instruments (4,4)
FREE HAND – A word meaning release followed by a word meaning a worker. The solution should be clued as (8) As 4,4, the answer means without restraint according to Chambers.
17 Shawl covering cape is cool (6)
PLACID – A word for a Scottish piece of cloth worn over the shoulder (shawl) around (covering) the abbreviation for cape. In a down clue, covering should be retained for A followed by B rather than A around B.
18 Potato commonly mashed with it ? How very silly (6)
STUPID – An anagram (mashed) of SPUD (potato commonly) IT. Do not (ever) use indirect anagrams. They are not allowed. If you have test solvers, they would point this out – probably in big red letters. Listen to them!
19 Early Old English to a graduate is just a small thing (6)
AMOEBA – A word meaning early followed by the abbreviation for Old English and the abbreviation for a graduate. I don’t think that Early is directly synonymous with the required letters in the solution.
20 The thread of a story (4)
YARN – Double definition.